Fashion

Nigerian attire and the latest trends
By YETUNDE AGBOLUAJE – original content

Nigerian fashion has made a massive impact on modern society. From their laces and material used to sow dresses and 2 pieces. Ankara is a traditional Nigerian material with African prints and patterns which is made out of 100% cotton used to make some of the most iconic designs. It has gained popularity in the international fashion industry. Ankara is very cost effective and can be bought all over the globe, compared to lace which is very expensive and are only sold in particular countries such as London and Switzerland. Various celebrities are spotted embracing the African culture and fashion on a daily basis in fashion shows, magazines and every day activities.

There is also Asoke, which is worn for traditional events such as weddings, funerals and important parties. The women wear the Gele (head tie) and Iro ati buba (top and wrapper) and the men wear Agbabda (a three piece flowing wide sleeved robe).

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These attires are worn to make a person stand out and feel confident about their choice of clothing. Many Nigerian materials have been used to make modern day clothing such as crop tops and trousers. Ankara material can also be used to bag accessories such as bags, earrings, shoes and hats. Ankara is made by a wax-resist dyeing technique, which allows the colour to reach only a fraction of the clothing. They are usually sold in yards of 6 – 12, which is usually enough for a whole outfit. Nigerian attire is usually worn for luxurious events traditionally, but in todays society fashion designers have made great use of the different material available to bring new life and meaning to what used to be cultural wear. Although these materials are African culture they originally started off in Indonesia where it was just common fabric. But Africans took it and brought it to life.

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Valentino receives backlash from primitive campaign
By GEORGIA IOANNOU – original content

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Fashion is known to have been inspired from various cultures around the world. Designers take inspiration from one another and extract ideas by looking into the history of a culture. Looking into textiles and materials and also different styles of garments. Designers take these ideas and modernise them with a twist and also add their own personal touch into making their vision come to life. The people of the fashion world became very disappointed and annoyed at famous designer Valentino’s Spring 2016 collection of African-inspired clothes. People took to twitter to voice their opinions on how predominantly white models walked the runway with cornrows and dreadlocks in their hair, showcasing a culture that did not reflect them in the slightest. It has always been known that the fashion industry has an issue with cultural appropriation, but it seems that Valentino took it a step too far. People seemed to be really aggravated with how the collections description featured words like ‘primitive’, ‘tribal’ and ‘wild’.

And most importantly that Africa is an immense continent and therefore impossible to categorise- 55 cultures will not be contained into one single collection. After the backlash the fashion house received, it took to Instagram to explain its vision- however, the public was still unforgiving, and rightly so:

twiPerhaps the issues raised here and the immense recoil of the public towards this campaign will encourage future brands to think more about how they choose to portray a collection. Fashion is art, and art is meant to be admired and loved; art should not evoke feelings of such uncertainty towards a culture and brand at this moment in time, in this day and age.

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